How to get influence in Anno 1800

Nov 3, 2022

Influence is a tricky thing in Anno 1800. It's one of those things you never pay attention to, but can bite you in the ass any time.

We all have (or want) some degree of influence in our daily lives. We voice our opinions to our peers, tell our kids to listen or your mates that the goal you scored was definitely worthy of a golden ball. 

It is also why we vote in elections. By casting our vote, we put trust in someone else to do the right thing for us. 

In Anno 1800, influence is mostly gained by population. Makes sense, the people chose you as their leader. And they celebrate your leadership if you do things right. 

What is influence

Lets start off by defining what influence is and why it is important in Anno 1800. 

Basically, the more you expand, the more influence you need to make everything in your empire run smoothly. 

Expanding is the keyword here. In the early game, nothing you do will cost you influence. But, at some point, a lot of things will. Like building ships, claiming islands and altering newspapers. 

One important things to know: influence isn't spent, it's more like a deposit.

So when you claim an island, it will cost you influence. But when you pack up your stuff and leave that island behind (by destroying the harbour), you get that influence back. 

Or when you build a large war fleet, your available influence will drop. When that fleet is destroyed by the Pyrphorians, the influence will come back to your balance. 

How to get influence

Unlike money, getting influence doesn't need an active focus. It happens largely automatically.

Base influence

As soon as you start the game, you get a base level of influence. Call it charisma, natural leadership, whatever. This base influence will get you through the early stages of the game while you grow your empire.

Influence isn't spent, it's more like a deposit.

The base influence depends on the difficulty level of the game you are playing. It starts you off at 105 influence for an easy game, 100 for medium and 97 for difficult.

Growing your population

The easiest way to grow your influence, is to grow your population

For every 400 inhabitants across your ever growing empire, 20 influence is gained. If you are playing on medium difficulty, that will be 15 influence per 400 population and a mere 12 for hard. 

Building investor residences will also give you 3 influence per investor residence (on easy, 2 or 1 on medium or hard).

Scraping the sky

If you have the High Life DLC, you have another way of gaining influence: Skyscrapers. Each building can give you up to 8 influence per skyscraper. It differs per type of residential tier and level though:


Influence gained by skyscrapers on Easy, Medium and Hard difficulty
Residents Level Easy Medium Hard
Engineers 1 1 1 0
  2 2 1 1
  3 3 2 1
Investors 1 4 2 1
  2 5 3 2
  3 6 3 2
  4 7 4 2
  5 8 4 2


How to regain influence

Influence is never lost. You spend it on things, but get it back when it's no longer needed for the upkeep of those things.

Regaining influence in Anno 1800 could be as simple as selling ships or demolishing buildings. 

Influence Investment Categories

So what do you spend investment on? Opening the Influence screen, you see there are 6 influence categories. 

  1. Propaganda
  2. Trade
  3. Military
  4. Optimisation
  5. Culture
  6. Expansion

Depending on the type of game you play, you might be able to ditch a few things here and there. Lets see what the different options are.


Whenever the editor pops up, you get the chance to pull some weight on the newspaper content. Every newspaper article you change, costs a certain amount of influence.

This amount is automatically regained when the newspaper effect wears of. That is at the end of the current newspaper edition. In other words: when the next one is released.


In the trade category, you spend your influence on Trade Ships, Charter Routes and Cargo Airships (if you have the Empires of the Sky DLC).

You get some for free. Hovering over the screen will conjure up a pop up, detailing the amount of free influence as well as the cost per item.

So if you have a couple of Clippers or World Class Reefers laying dormant, selling them will regain you 2 and 6 influence per ship. 


In the military category, you spend your influence on Military Ships, Defense Buildings and Armed Airships (if you have the Empires of the Sky DLC).

To regain influence, sell the ships or harbour cannons you no longer use.

Easier said than done when you're at war with Anne Harlow or any of the more aggressive AI... 


A great way to improve general happiness or productivity is to use the items Anno 1800 provides. They are placed in Trade Unions, Town Halls or Harbourmaster's Offices

Each of these buildings cost influence to build. So if you have them, but don't use them (highly unlikely, why would you build them in the first place?): demolish away to regain influence!


Even though they're pretty to look at, even the beautiful Botanical Garden, Zoo and Museum Modules cost influence to build. 

It can be a hard choice to keep or get rid of them, but every demolished compound will get you back 10 influence points. 


Ever island costs influence to claim and keep under your control. The larger the island, the more influence it costs to build that new harbour building.

That's not it though. Every Commuter Pier you build and Island Share you buy, will set you back some influence as well. Of course, selling the shares back or destroying commuter piers will get it back. 

Make sure you still have the right population tiers and inhabitants on the island before destroying the commuter pier though! Would be a shame to cripple production of some very important goods...

Wrapping it up

So now you know how to gain influence (grow your population) and how to regain it (don't spend it). 

It's not the hardest aspect of the game and it will only haunt you mid-game. Population is still growing, there aren't any investors yet, but you do want to expand. 


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